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Exclusive: Eurosceptic plotters mull Queen’s Speech revolt

2 June 2014

3:23 PM

2 June 2014

3:23 PM

David Cameron managed to extract promises from some of the more troublesome backbench MPs that they wouldn’t get up to any monkey business around this year’s Queen’s Speech. Last year’s motion of regret tabled by John Baron and Peter Bone caused all sorts of trouble, but it did lead to the Conservatives publishing their own EU referendum bill, which was taken up by James Wharton and provoked #LetBritainDecide fever.

I have learned that the thinking in some Eurosceptic circles is that someone should table another similar amendment to the vote on this year’s Speech which similarly expresses regret for the absence of an EU referendum bill. But this time the plotters hope that the Conservative whips will direct their MPs to support it, given the Cabinet battle to get such a bill into the government’s legislative agenda. The plotters wonder whether it would be a good way of highlighting Lib Dem intransigence on this issue and putting pressure on Labour.

This is far less unhelpful to the Tory leadership than last year’s rebellion. But the chances are that Number 10 will still see it as a distraction from what already looks to be a pretty lean speech. As for whether such a move would gain sufficient support from within the Conservative party, that hinges on the Newark result. Even winning by a close margin will not send the Tories into turmoil, but it could well provoke some soul-searching that swells the supporters for this latest plot.


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  • El_Sid

    Since the poor dears are twiddling their thumbs not knowing what to do with themselves, perhaps there could be a conscious “housekeeping” effort in this next session to consolidate existing statutes into a single statement of eg traffic offences, company law and so on. Get rid of the Act x amended by Act y under SI z and so on – it will make the legal process marginally more efficient (and hence cheaper), and a single consistent law will avoid some of the loopholes found in the cracks between different Acts passed thirty years apart.

    I know it’s not the most earth-shattering thing to be doing, but it’s better than nothing.

  • Denis_Cooper

    The LibDems have a veto over what goes into the Queen’s Speech.

    When the coalition was formed it could be argued that they had substantial support in the country and therefore should be treated as equal partners in government, but now that their support has collapsed from 24% to 8% it is no longer possible to mount that argument.

    Then the ratio of public support was 37% Tory to 24% LibDems, now it is 32% to 8%:

    http://www.electoralcalculus.co.uk/polls.html

    and so we have a severely docked tail wagging the dog.

    By rights we should not have to endure the fag-end of this Parliament for another year, we should have a general election now for a new Parliament which more accurately reflected changed public opinion.

    • foxoles

      Quite agree. But it was that idiot Cameron – yet again – who passed the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, thus boxing himself in – and all the rest of us along with him.

      • Alexsandr

        was that in any manifesto? no? thought not.

        • Aberrant_Apostrophe

          ‘Manifesto’ is the new brand of loo paper being brought out by Andrex early next year.

      • Aberrant_Apostrophe

        He’s not quite boxed in. He could persuade a back bencher to move a vote of no-confidence in the current Government. However, I’m not sure Labour would support it though as a) they don’t have a leader up to the job of PM and b) their policies are blowing in the wind down the street.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          The Millipedes would be on it like a duck on a beetle. They are ahead. You want elections when you’re ahead.

  • London Calling

    Yes Izzy I hope so…………..the chosen who lead the European union ruling our elected, although no one ws truly chosen in a hung parliament and wont be again come the next election however democrasy has been taken over by dictatorship, something we need to reverse and can only do so with reform and the in out vote on the EU…………..Our Queen means nothing without the respect democracy delivers and to the people of Great Britain/England…………..:(

  • Kitty MLB

    Oh I really wish the Queen was able to revolt.
    To stand up and say: Be off with you, yellow perils of the
    coalition, to the tower yee shall go.
    My first minister I command you to put an end to this coalition
    and call for a general election this autumn. And no more
    coalition’s and deals in my realm…or is it my realm.

  • you_kid

    In the meantime another European Monarch resigns as he has had enough of this fatuous game of ‘representing’. The Magna Carta elite however continues on its ill-conceived path of national tyranny.

    • Lucy Sky Diamonds

      k.

  • Tom W Huxley

    Can it really be described as a revolt if it has the approval of the whips office?

    • Grey Wolf

      Yes, if Ms Hardman chooses to describe it so.

  • foxoles

    ‘Even winning by a close margin will not send the Tories into turmoil …’

    Are you quite sure about that?

    Survation polling shows the Tory majority being slashed from 16,000 to just 2,000, thus turning Newark from a rock-solid Tory seat into a marginal. You really think this will just be shrugged off? Dream on.

    • Grey Wolf

      Pardon Ms Hardman. She is training on the job.

    • Ooh!MePurse!

      But even if that is the outcome, the likelihood is that it would be a marginal for only a year. By-elections are very different from General Elections and can produce some rum results.

      • Kitty MLB

        Indeed, wholeheartedly agree.

      • Hexhamgeezer

        ………and in a GE the Tories will have to spread their resources round the country instead of just piling into Newark. Winning a narrow victory there in what should still be a banker seat should put the wind up the hierarchy. In a GE local parties worn down by the contempt shown by dave and chums, are going to be up against some pretty enthusiastic Kippers.

        • Ooh!MePurse!

          But you’re making the error of thinking that the circumstances that exist now can be directly mapped to the circumstances next May. We’ve got 11 months of events, party manifestos and probable economic growth to go. Add in the fact that people will be more focused on a proper election and that incumbent governments historically tend to increase their share of the vote as elections loom closer. I’m quite sure that there are many people who voted Ukip in the Euro elections who will do the same in the GE but you need to prepare for the fact that it’s not going to be that many, despite whatever any polls might show. The situation in May 2015 will be utterly different from now.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            UKIP will take 10% at the barest minimum, and those are sufficient numbers to see Call Me Dave’s head mounted on a spike.

          • Hexhamgeezer

            RE your 1st line. No I’m not.

  • LadyDingDong

    “I have learned that the thinking in some Eurosceptic circles is that someone should table another similar amendment to the vote on this year’s Speech which similarly expresses regret for the absence of an EU referendum bill. But this time the plotters hope that the Conservative whips will direct their MPs to support it, given the Cabinet battle to get such a bill into the government’s legislative agenda. The plotters wonder whether it would be a good way of highlighting Lib Dem intransigence on this issue and putting pressure on Labour.”

    Let me translate this for those who live in the real world outside the Westminster bubble: Isabel heard from anther journalist who spoke to someone who heard it from a lowly backbencher that something might happen but then again it might not. When I used to mix with the great and the good in Fleet Street back when newspapers had real journalists working for them, an exclusive was actually a story based on facts and and not a string of conditional clauses culminating in no conclusion whatsoever. Thank God I don’t pay for the Speccie any more.

    • telemachus

      It has become fashionable to knock Isabel
      Make no mistake she is a rising superstar and well plugged in at Westminster
      As post after post here attests
      Take some time to watch her get the better of Brillo or run the Saturday Westminster programme on radio 4

      • fubarroso

        Watching Isabel on the radio doesn’t seem very practical.

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